was approaching; that life, which is so shining and luminous, was taking its leave; while death, which is terrifying and apparently darkness, was preparing to arrive; and that the lovable world, which is thought to be permanent and is the beloved of the heedless, was hastening to its decease.
In order to deceive myself and again plunge my head into heedlessness I considered the pleasures of the social standing I enjoyed in Istanbul, which was far higher than I deserved, but there was no advantage in it at all. All the regard, attention, and consolation of people could only accompany me as far as the looming door of the grave; there it would be extinguished. Since I saw it to be a tedious hypocrisy, cold conceit, and temporary stupefaction under the embellished veil of glory and renown, which is the illusory aim of those who chase fame, I understood that these things which had until then deceived me could provide me with no solace, there was no light to be found in them at all.
I again started to listen to the reciters in Bayezid Mosque in order to hear the Qur’an’s heavenly teaching, and to awaken once more. From its sublime instruction I heard good news through sacred decrees of the sort,
And give glad tidings to those who believe.(2:25, etc.)
With its effulgence, I sought consolation, hope, and light, within the points at which I had felt horror, desolation and despair, not outside them. Endless thanks be to Almighty God, I found the cure within the malady itself, I found the light within the darkness itself, I found the solace within the horror itself.
Firstly, I looked in the face of death, which is imagined to be most terrible and terrifies everyone. Through the light of the Qur’an I saw that although its veil is black, dark, and ugly, for believers its true face is luminous and beautiful. We have proved this truth decisively in many parts of the Risale-i Nur. For example, as we explained in the Eighth Word and the Twentieth Letter, death is not annihilation and separation, but the introduction to eternal life, its beginning. It is a rest from the hardships of life’s duties, a demobilization. It is a change of residence. It is to meet with the caravan of one’s friends who have already migrated to the Intermediate World; and so on. I saw death’s true, beautiful face through truths like these. I looked at death’s face not with fear, but with a sort of longing. I understood one meaning of the Sufis’ contemplation of death.
Then I considered my departed youth – youth, which makes everyone weep on its passing, which infatuates them and fills them with desire, causing them to pass it in sin and heedlessness. I saw that within its beautiful embroidered garb was an ugly, drunken, stupified face. Had I not learnt its